Polyairs or No Bull

Submitted: Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
ThreadID: 2582 Views:3187 Replies:10 FollowUps:15
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I currently have a 1999 St Pathfinder with ARB heavy duty springs all round and Nitrochargers in the rear. The car has a bit of weight with an ARB Sahara Bar and a custom 1800 x 100mm steel roof rack.

I am contemplating installing an LRA 105ltr auxillary tank to increase range and am thinking I'll throw the spare on the rack (ie no rear wheel carrier due to vision considerations out the back).

My only concern is ride height with the weight of a full auxillary tank - here's the problem should I be looking at fitting Polyairs or No Bull Suspension Supports - I have heard good and bad about both.

I'd appreciate any advice from anyone who has experience with either/ both products.

N.B. Ditchin the Pathie is not an option - lack of range is the only thing that annoys me about the vehicle. Moggs
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Reply By: OziExplorer - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
I think where people have had problems with Polyairs, have been where they have the original springs fitted, and they fit Polyairs to try to overcome the problems/weakness of the original springs. With quality Australian made springs, Polyairs work well. I do not know if you realise that Australian made spring steel is far superior to other countries spring steel. For example, the Lexus vehicles are all fitted with Australian steel springs. I think that speaks for itself, and they do it for a very good reason.
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Follow Up By: Moggs - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
Thanks for the reply - Do you therefore recommend Polyairs are my solution in combination with the ARB heavy duty springs?? I am unsure of their intended application ie. correcting weak original spring ride height as you describe above, or supplementing better springs. Do you know anything about the No Bull product? This may be naive, but I'm thinking if it was such a good product surely it would be carried by more than one distributor (being Heaslip Campers in SA)

In addition, has anyone experienced any difficulty in managing an LRA Auxillary tank re: dash light indicators and the electric pump? Moggs
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Follow Up By: Oziexplorer - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
Never heard of the 'No Bull' brand.
Do you have a URL for them?
Because they maybe a new brand, does not mean they are poor in design or quality. It is a case of doing your research.
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Follow Up By: Moggs - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
Read about the No Bull product here

http://www.caravanandcampingsa.com.au/hostingdir/heaslip/products/accessories.html

Theres a bit of info on other boards, mainly from Jackaroo owners and from people who have purchased campers through Heaslip. Moggs
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Follow Up By: Moggs - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
FYI, pricing seems to be around the $350 area + freight from Sth Aust. - which is about $130 cheper than getting the Polyairs fitted in Sydney. Moggs
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Follow Up By: Oziexplorer - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Moggs, here is a direct link:
www.nobullsuspensionsupports.com.au
The appear to be nearly identical to the Polyairs.
For the price difference, I would be going for these NoBull ones. I think the actual air bag units all come from the same supplier.

Just found this:
www.loadtek.com.au
AEON are a well respected name and think the inovator of this system.
Aeon were available at least 20 years ago that I can remember. Prices look good, approx $270.
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Follow Up By: Moggs - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
OziExplorer, thanks for the info and links. I've ruled the polyairs out - now just need to decide between the No Bull and Loadtek. Probably will go with whichever is cheaper as they seem identicle. Moggs
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Reply By: Member - Ash - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
moggs,
I've got a pathfinder 97 and recently tackeled simpson, gunbarrel, canning stock route and back via anne beddel hence we were pretty laid down with spares and fuel. Before leaving I got the polly airs installed and they were absolutely fantastic, they kept the ride high and ground clearance right no matter what the load.

I thought about the tank too, but the trade off was too big, what to do with the spare and did I need the extra tank when I returned. Not to mention where to put the spare for city driving, there good when the're tucked away under the car. Expense wise 5 jerry's will cost you $150 and the tank was about $1300. The tank also put all the weight behind the rear axels (not where you really want it) where as with the jerry's you can put them in a more central position in the car for better handling. Oh yeah, puncture that spare tank and you could really be up the creek.

Good luck with trip and hope this is of some help
AnswerID: 9584

Follow Up By: Moggs - Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Dec 11, 2002 at 01:00
Ash, thanks for the info, always good to hear options. Did you have any problems / or did any aftermarket accessory providers discuss the pros and cons of removing the bump stops out of the Pathfinder. Prior to installing the Polyairs did you consider the No Bull option?Can you please tell me what kind of jerry cans you used - plastic or metal, and where you carried them. I considered the jerry can option, however the wife was a bit nervy over strapping them to the cargo barrier - 20cm from our 2 yr olds head - so our option would be the roof rack (maybe numerous 10ltr cans to ease the back on loading and retrieval. Your right tank is expensive - I was quoted $1,400 fitted from Artarmon Automotive in Sydney - however we do a lot of travelling and plan on retaining the Pathfinder for at least another 5 years (invested too much blood, sweat and tears sourcing accessories and gearing it up to turn it over any sooner). I considered the holing the tank problem and thought I'd keep a tube of kneed It handy. Out of interest - how did the Pathfinderhandle the trip - any trouble with losing harmonic boxes off the exhaust? - its the only regular complaint I've heard about the vehicle off road - we lost one in tassie earlier this year. Moggs
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Reply By: Steve - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Moggs: the Polyair and the No Bull are completely different units !! The Polyair are inflated and pressure can be varied according to the load , the No Bull have not got this facility.... it is a replacement Bump Stop and is a very different unit and should not be compared with the Polyairs.....I have a set on L/cruiser and give them a hiding, albeit looked after with regular pressure checks and they are the best (and cheapest) mod that I have on the unit !! THEY ARE FANTASTIC.... I had them fitted, even though I could have done it myself and am delighted I got 'them' to do the job !!
AnswerID: 9601

Follow Up By: Moggs - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Steve, thanks for the advice - sorry, but I'm a bit confused - re: your comment about 'regular pressure checks' - does this mean you have the Polyairs on and not the NoBull product? I understand that they are different products - and have been leaning towards the NoBull as I don't want to worry about checking pressures - knowing me I'll always be sticking my head under the vehicle to see if their damaged. I don't know why OziExplorer commented above that they "appear to be nearly identicle to the Polyairs" - they look quite different to me.
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Reply By: Steve - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
OZIEXPLOR is like a Wombat , full of hot air, bleep and throws dirt at everyone !!

Now ..The Polyairs are air bags that are put inside your coil springs and inflated to a suitable pressure to maintain ride height... these are what I have fitted . As often as you check pressures in your tyres is as often as you need to check the pressures in the Polyairs.. If you don't care about your vehicle, tyres etc you wont have any problems , just dont go too far into the Outback! The other thingos are units that stop the vehicle thumping down on the axle over heavy rough roads and do nothing for ride height in the normal course of the day..Under a full load the car sits at normal ride height sitting on these air bags and bottoming out the suspension never happens... your handling under full load is improved and I have found them to be .....etc !

A pair of Polyairs fitted are around $400 , this of course varies with the vehicle and which size you need ! Call them up for a quote !!
AnswerID: 9604

Reply By: wazza - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Moggs,

I've got a '93 80 series which I bought second hand 2 years ago. The guy before me towed a van twice around Oz and had them fitted a couple of years before that. He swears by them. I can't fault them either and am running them with heavy duty OME springs on the rear. Makes the car handle heaps better through the corners with much reduced body roll and this is with a loaded roof rack. I run about 15-18 psi in them. Never run them below say 10psi as this is where some people may be getting their's damaged. Gives a little extra lift in the back end when no load in the back. Not much, but half an inch or so. Just stops (reduces) it squatting when you do load the thing up.

Wazza
AnswerID: 9605

Reply By: Moggs - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Steve/Wazza, seems I might have to reconsider - thats two pretty strong recomendations for Polyairs. I might have mis-stated myself earlier - I do check tyre pressures - its just that by nature I may have to resist the urge to check the airbags for chaffing / leaks (if I fit them) every time I get out of the vehicle. I was quoted $480 by ARB Northern to fit them to the Pathfinder - but the more I read about 'them' the more I'm inclined to take my $$ elsewhere. Moggs
AnswerID: 9606

Follow Up By: Steve - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
The Polyairs are made in Sydney by Heasman's in Sth Sydney... St Peters .. call them .. they make them , fit them, so why go anywhere else?
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Follow Up By: Moggs - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Steve, will contact them direct - I was unaware that they were manufactured here. Thanks. Moggs
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Reply By: Axel + Karen - Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:00
Moggs,, as some previous said ,dont take Oziexplorer as a source of information,, must be his Phd gets in the way that he cant tell the difference between a yellow bump stop [no bull ] and a red air bag,, polyairs are the go,,easy to fit ,when not fully loaded keep at least 5psi,,stops chaffing and subsequent wear..Axel
AnswerID: 9618

Follow Up By: Oziexplorer - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
Poor Axel and Karen, must be pretty crook when all you can post is innuendo and fallacies. Polyair have more than one product, and that is the brochure I have here. Not a case of not being able to tell the difference. Now go and wipe the manure from all over your faces.
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Follow Up By: Axel + Karen - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
Ozi,so sorrythat you got your nose out of joint once again,,Ozi the FIGJAM Explorer ,fountain of informationon all subjects [even if has never heard of ,seen or used the product ] all hail Ozi.
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Reply By: Goran - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
Ok. I don't want to spark any controversy here with my comments, but i just have to set something straight. Polyair or any other inflatable spring helping devices are only suitable for towing and carrying loads over reasonably smooth roads. They are not suitable for desert traveling over corrugations and similar extreme conditions. Thing about it for a minute. By fitting them you are preventing the coil of working as designed therefore you are transfering vibration to a next weak point which happens to be chassis. Diferent rate springs (suspension upgrade) is the only answer if you intend to travel extreme tracks. In early October we run into a bloke in Nissan patrol near well 37 CSR. He had them on. and he had very reasonable load on board. You should see the damage. It was not worth welding up. Chassis was cracked over a meter in lenght .
My mate did CSR 2 years ago and seen the same thing . Polyairs....no thanks. Only if i tow a caravan around oz.
AnswerID: 9639

Reply By: ExplorOz Team - David - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
For my part I must agree with Goran on this one. I have seen several vehicle's in and around the deserts with cracked chassis or upper suspension towers torn off the vehicle and the only common item I saw in every vehicle was polyairs with what appeared to be to much air in them. Every one of my sightings (and the number grows with every trip) has not been towing and the drivers had said they put a bit more air in to compensate for the load. So if you must not put to much air in them when loaded and say you springs are not capable of handling the load without them then what use are they. What more can I say, I am not wanting to start a debate either, but for my money I get the right spring and shock combinations for the vehicle and load (even if towing). Spend the money on your correct suspension setup and let the springs and shocks do the job they are indended to do (unless you are pulling a large van on the main roads, and even then use ride levellers or similiar).

The other thing to think about is that when the bags compress the air forces the bag between the springs and actually puts pressure on the sides of ths coils effectively pushing them out sideways (coils only of course). This cannot be good for the springs as this is not catered for in the springs design and manufacture.

If you have them fitted and are happy then that is fantastic and you are obviously using them correctly, however they are not for me.

David
AnswerID: 9650

Follow Up By: Axel + Karen - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
David,,all the breaks on coil suspension,or on leaf,,will bet an ice cold xxxx, breaks on coil suspended.
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Reply By: Rick - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
Moggs,

Poly Airs seem to be a recurring thread. I recall participating in a number of postings re same about 2 months ago. Could I suggest a search for this topic?

I have just fitted the No Bull system. Too soon for any judgements off road or loaded. I previously have had Poly Airs on 4wd's and 2wd's and they are good, did the job for me. However, on some of my mates' vehicles thay have not been successful - punctured bags occurred.

But the No Bull are designed to work differently. You remove existing bump stops & relace with these. It took me about 45 minutes per side. I have H/Duty TJM springs as well. As David (EplorOz David, I mean) says, design the system for your needs.

As a matter of interest, the Hema maps vehicle, a GU Patrol, has No Bull units fitted, as well as after market suspension.

Cheers
Rick.
AnswerID: 9661

Follow Up By: Moggs - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
Rick, thanks for the input - can you please advise why after having Polyairs on numerous vehicles you opted for No Bulls this time around?? I have read some of the previous threads on Polyairs, however in asking the question I was looking for a more direct comparison of the No Bull vis Polyairs. Unfortunately this seems to be one of those things with no reasonable consensus on merits.
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Follow Up By: Rick - Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00

Friday, Dec 13, 2002 at 01:00
Moggs,

I was aware of the cracking tower issues with Poly Airs. The No Bull works on the chassis directly, and so can't crack a peripheral piece of architecture. I spoke to the developer/owner at a 4WD show, and he showed me pics of his GU with standard suspension fitted with No Bulls, and some of the roads he had travelled - his vehicle and weight stats were near identical to mine when fully loaded (3.2 t).

I also liked the fact that when unladen (most of the time in the city) a stiff suspension was not attemting to work. The No Bull will only be utilised when hard cornering/body roll is enacted, or when heavily loaded. Besides, why not try soemthing a bit different. I had been impressed that the Hema mapping vehicle (which I saw in Darwin recently) uses the No Bull. They carry more weight and do more miles than I, and they liked the system.

I also was attracted to the fitment ease and the therefore cheaper price of installation.

Another factor is that I did not actually want increased height; rather just increased load carrying capacity.

Hope this helps

Rick.
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